¡Es la cultura, estúpido! Debate in the Spanish-speaking realm is shaped to an especially high degree by the major artists. Several top positions in the influence ranking go to directors (such as Spain’s Pedro Almodovar or Mexico’s Alfonso Cuaron) and authors (from mystic Paulo Coelho to Nobel Laureate Mario Vargas Llosa). This demonstrates on the one hand the degree of cultural unity that comes from a common language – and on the other, quite how few of these cultural connections persist in societal or scholarly debate. The old Spanish colonial power now in no way functions as inspiration for Latin-American intellectuals – and these, whether from Mexico, Chile or Cuba, likewise exert hardly any influence outside the borders of their own countries. Astonishingly, not even the election of an Argentinian Pope has brought about a reversal of this trend: Francis assumes an unremarkable 14th place.